"Justice League": Exploring How Superman Returns (Again)
Film, Comic Books
Every day in November we will reveal the greatest stories ever told starring a particular character or written/drawn by a particular creator (and throughout the month, you’ll get daily chances to vote for NEXT week’s lists). These lists are voted on by YOU, the reader!
Here is the list of characters/creators featured so far (along with the rules on how to vote).
Today’s list is the Greatest Robin/Red Robin (Tim Drake) Stories Ever Told!
10. Robin #25-26 “Sophomore Lethal”
In this gripping two-parter guest-starring Green Arrow, Chuck Dixon and artists Mike Wieringo and Stan Woch bring the tragedy of high school gun violence to Tim Drake’s high school.
9. Robin #74-77 “Robin at Brentwood Academy”
Chuck Dixon puts on a master class in how to seamlessly and yet drastically change the status quo of a comic book as he has Tim Drake be forced to attend a private boarding school for boys. Seeing Tim adjust to being Robin in an all-new environment was quite enjoyable. The great artwork of Pete Woods and Jesse Delperdang certainly did not hurt!
8. Robin #1-5 “Flying Solo”
In this first story arc of his own ongoing series, Tim had to deal with the fact that with Jean-Paul Valley as Batman, Tim no longer had a place at Batman’s side. So for the first time ever, Tim was truly a solo hero. This story also introduced the idea of Stephanie “Spoiler” Brown as a supporting character for Tim. I believe Chuck Dixon later noted that he initially intended for Stephanie to be a character in just this arc, but the fan response was so strong that he kept her around from here on out. I can believe it, as she was used so well in this arc (and the chemistry between her and Tim was so strong) that there would have been an uproar if she wasn’t used again! Tom Grummett and Ray Kryssing supply the artwork.
7. Teen Titans #17-19 “Titans of Tomorrow”
Tim comes face to face with his worst fears when he and the rest of the Teen Titans meet their future selves. Tim has become the worst version of Batman you can imagine – all the skills but none of the heart that makes Tim such an awesome hero. Geoff Johns wrote this tale and Mike McKone and Mario Alquiza drew it.
6. Red Robin #9-12, Batgirl #8 “Collision”
In Chris Yost’s final arc as writer of Red Robin, Tim is on a collision path with Ra’s Al Ghul (hence the name) and Batman and Robin (as well as Stephanie Brown, who is now the new Batgirl) might be collateral damage in the conflict!
5. Batman #440-442, New Titans #60-61 “A Lonely Place of Dying”
While he made a couple of quick cameo appearances, this was Tim Drake’s first full introduction as he tries to get Dick Grayson to return to Batman as Robin, since Tim feels that Batman has been spiraling ever since Jason Todd’s death. By the end of the story (which pits Batman and Nightwing against Two-Face), it is TIM who is chosen to be the new Robin. Marv Wolfman and George Perez wrote the story and Jim Aparo, Tom Grummett, George Perez and Mike DeCarlo drew it.
4. Nightwng #25 “The Boys”
This one-off issue by Chuck Dixon, Scott McDaniel and Karl Story did a wonderful job exploring the relationship between Batman’s two “sons,” Nightwing and Robin.
3. Batman #455-457 “Identity Crisis”
This was the conclusion of Tim Drake’s training to be the new Robin, as he is forced to decide whether to go into action on his own when Batman is captured by the Scarecrow. Is Tim really ready to be the new Robin? Is it his decision or Bruce’s? This also marked the debut of the brand-new Robin costume, designed by the legendary Neal Adams. Alan Grant wrote it and Norm Breyfogle and Steve Mitchelle drew it.
2. Robin #1-5
This was Tim’s first solo story ever, as Chuck Dixon, Tom Lyle and Bob Smith gave us an action-packed adventure throughout Europe as Robin receives his final training. Lady Shiva makes an important appearance and two new rogues for Robin debut – King Snake and Lynx!
1. Robin II: Joker’s Wild #1-4 /strong>
A follow-up to the super successful first Robin mini-series, we see Robin patrolling Gotham by himself while Batman is on a case out of the country. But while Batman is away – the Joker strikes! This is the first time Joker met Tim Drake, the third Robin – a notable experience since Joker killed the previous Robin! Tom Lyle and Bob Smith once again provided the artwork.
That’s the list! Agree? Disagree? Let me know!
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